The humble tandoor was invented in Central Asia and it is believed it started in Persia while some of its remains can also be traced back to Harappa near the Makran coastline.
Before the partition of the subcontinent, Punjab had community kitchens, where each village would heat their tandoor and cook together.
It was also considered a blow to the established order that favoured men, as the communal cooking around the tandoor gave the usually homebound women a chance to gather and talk.
Largely part of the Punjabi culture, it was not until the partition that the tandoor started to gain popularity on both sides of the border. Roads such as the Silk Route ensured that the clay structure also made its way to places like China.